Cellular communication via nanoparticle-transporting biovesicles

Silvia Ferrati, Kellie I. Mcconnell, Aaron C. Mack, Natalie Sirisaengtaksin, Rodrigo Diaz, Andrew J. Bean, Mauro Ferrari, Rita E. Serda

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Aims: Endothelial cells are dynamic cells tasked with selective transport of cargo from blood vessels to tissues. Here we demonstrate the potential for nanoparticle transport across endothelial cells in membrane-bound vesicles. Materials & methods: Cell-free endothelial-derived biovesicles were characterized for cellular and nanoparticle content by electron microscopy. Confocal microscopy was used to evaluate biovesicles for organelle-specific proteins, and to monitor biovesicle engulfment by naive cells. Results: Nanoparticle-laden biovesicles containing low-density polyethyleneimine nanoparticles appear to be predominately of endosomal origin, combining features of multivesicular bodies, lysosomes and autophagosomes. Conversely, high-density polyethyleneimine nanoparticles stimulate the formation of biovesicles associated with cellular apoptotic breakdown. Secreted LAMP-1-positive biovesicles are internalized by recipient cells, either of the same origin or of novel phenotype. Conclusion: Cellular biovesicles, rich in cellular signals, present an important mode of cell-to-cell communication either locally or through broadcasting of biological messages. Original submitted 30 August 2012; Revised submitted 2 February 201.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)581-592
Number of pages12
Issue number5
StatePublished - Apr 2014


  • biovesicle
  • endothelia
  • exocytosis
  • iron oxide
  • microvesicle
  • nanoparticle

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Bioengineering
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Development


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